The Model 40C    

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The Model 40C was built by John Deere for model year 1953 to 1955.  The crawler was the second of the 40 line to be produced at the Dubuque Works.  Production began a week after the T began in late 1952.  The first 40C's were 3 rollers, using many parts from the MC undercarriage.  The track components were still being built at the old Lindeman plant in Yakima.  

After serial number 62263, the 3 roller UC was discontinued and you had the choice of a new design 4 roller or 5 roller UC.  This UC was designed and manufactured at the Dubuque Works.   A redesigned steering clutch and final drives were also given to the crawlers at this time. 

You could order an all-fuel version of the 40C.  Although not available on the early 3 rollers, Deere did offer an all-fuel option after the first six months of production.  

A variety of track pad configurations were available to suit the application the crawler was to be used for.  You could get a regular single grouser track pad in 10, 12, 14 inch widths.  The snow shoe track pad was available in 12 and 14 inch widths and had a variation, commonly called an ice shoe, where part of the grouser was higher.  The snow shoes had a hole in the middle to allow ice and packed snow a way to fall out of the chain.  A track pad called a all-purpose, semi-grouser, which had a two 1/2 grousers on it, was commonly applied to a crawler that was also equipped with a loader.  There were two types of rubber track pad and two styles of flat shoe or street shoe.  Flat shoes were used on crawlers used to clear snow from sidewalks and others used inside, on concrete floors for example.

Other differences in the 40C was an over size front idler which was used on some 4 rollers.  It was a 5 roller idler installed on a 4 roller UC.  Without checking the casting numbers, you can tell by counting the links in the chain.  If it has 32 links, it has the oversize front idler.  A regular 4 roller has 31 links in the chain.  A rear sprocket shield was available on the 4 and 5 roller UCs.  Two different rock guards were available, depending on whether the unit was equipped with the sprocket shields or not.  

Most 40Cs were painted green with yellow applied to the undercarriage parts.  If you were an industrial user, you could order an all yellow unit or for an extra charge, get your unit painted about any color you wanted.  Seat frame, dash and lights were black. Muffler was silver.  

Crawler production began with serial number 60001 to 62263 where the 54 model year started and the use of the Dubuque UC began.  1954 units continued up through to 66019.  Serial number 71689 was the last 40C built in October of 1955.  This made a total of 11,689 crawlers manufactured.


Optional equipment

You could order your crawler equipped with an orchard exhaust.  Front and rear lights and a grill guard to protect the nose of the crawler were available.  Radiator shutters were popular on crawlers used in the northern states and Canada.  A #61 Bulldozer Blade was  a popular option on the 40C.  Other equipment available was a JD #90 loader.  Adkins made a bulldozer blade seen on some 40C's.  GearMatic had a winch that would mount on the rear of the 40C.  A PTO and a belt drive unit for the PTO was available from the Dubuque Works or added by the dealer, as was a remote hydraulic unit for towed implements.

All these options and different track configurations, could make a nice collection of  machines if you tried to represent all the combinations of equipment.  Add to this the 3-point hitch kit made available for the 40C after it became an option on the 420C production.  If you had a  Shelly after market backhoe attachment, you could easily have 5-6 or more tractors.

When is a crawler a bulldozer?  Check Deans Crawler Site.  A great history on crawler tractors of all colors.


Horsepower* - drawbar 19.6 Horsepower* - belt 24.1
Track Undercarriage 3, 4 and 5 roller Clearance 12"
Track Shoes 10", 12", 14" in four styles Width 67.25"
Compression 6.5:1 Length 114.75"
Gears 4 fwd, 1 rev Height - over hood 50.5"
Electrical 6 V Positive ground Overall length 102"
Weight 3 roller - 4000 4 roller - 4150 5 roller - 4560
Wheelbase - sprocket center to idler center 3 roller - 48"  4 roller - 56" 5 roller - 66 3/8"

*with gasoline engine


Designed and built by DL